If you're in the landscaping business, chances are you've gotten questions from your customers about landscape lighting.
Landscape lighting is a booming industry. Everybody wants it, and more and more landscaping contractors are willing to offer it -- both to their customers and to yours.
You might’ve even dabbled in it a handful of times yourself, throwing in a few path lights or spot lights to cap off your design.
Now, you're at a crossroads: is it time for you to officially start offering landscape lighting as a service?
And if you do, how do you make sure you'll succeed at it and profit?
Let's talk about that.
Should Your Landscaping Business Do Lighting, Too?
For many landscapers, installing landscape lighting is a natural step in growing their business.
Landscape lighting can be a great way for landscape contractors to bring in more revenue and reach a whole new market.
That said, adding landscape lighting to your service offerings isn't something you can do on a whim.
Professional low voltage lighting isn’t as easy as ‘throwing in’ a few path lights here and there. If you're going to make it in this industry, you'll need the right products, a specific skill set, and a solid strategy.
In this article, we’re going to break down the decision point-by-point to make sure you understand everything you need to know.
- We'll start with the reasons why you might consider adding landscape lighting to your service offerings.
Then, we'll go over what makes professional low voltage lighting a success and how to get it right.
- Finally, we'll end by discussing outdoor lighting products and which product options are going to be the most profitable for you.
If you need help getting started or learning more about professional low voltage lighting, we're here for you. Send us a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
1. Why You Should Install Landscape Lighting
Grow Your Landscaping Business
Landscaping lighting often goes hand-in-hand with the work you already do for your existing customers, making for an easy upsell as well as a way to gain new clients.
Professional landscape lighting opens the door to a much broader range of well-paying landscape jobs. More and more homeowners want lighting as part of the package, meaning you’ll have to either offer it yourself or subcontract it out. Taking care of it yourself lets you keep all the profits while you build your reputation in this area.
Plus, landscape lighting has a longer season than landscaping. If you live in an area where seasonality is a factor, you can extend your work well into the fall and winter to provide lighting systems for patios, driveways, paths, and more.
With the beginning of fall and daylight savings, the demand for landscape lighting increases. The months of October through December are among the most popular for installing outdoor lighting since the sun sets earlier.
It’s Easy to Get Started
Good news: offering professional low voltage lighting really does not require a major upfront investment. All you really need is the truck you already have, a pair of wire strippers, drill bits, and the skills to pay the bills!
The outdoor lighting industry is more about skill equipment. It doesn't cost much to get started, and the skills and knowledge you already have as a landscaping pro will serve you well.
Of course, you'll still need to learn some tricks of the trade. If you’re looking for the quickest and easiest way to get started, check out the exclusive in-sider program. Here, you’ll find tons of free training resources, trade discounts on tools and products, and a direct line to our pro’s to make the process a breeze.
Add Beauty and Value to Your Landscaping Projects
Outdoor lighting isn’t just for safety and security. It brings the entire landscaping design to a whole new level.
When you combine your landscaping talent with your customer's style and beautiful lighting products, the results can be stunning. Choosing the right landscape lighting can have a dramatic effect on your client's outdoor space -- not to mention making your work stand out at night!
In addition to enhancing the beauty of plants and hardscaping, landscape lighting draws more eyes onto the property, which can lead to inquiries from new clients about all of your landscaping services.
Ongoing Revenue with Maintenance Contracts
Even with low-maintenance setups like low voltage LEDs, outdoor lighting will always require some maintenance to look great year after year.
Plus, as the landscape plants grow and change, someone will need to make the necessary lighting adjustments.
All of this adds up to additional, ongoing revenue for you over time. A landscape lighting job doesn’t only pay you once. Adjustments, bulb changes, and standard maintenance add up!
While the maintenance requirements of low voltage LED lighting systems is not extensive or burdensome to your customers, it still adds to the profit you make off every new landscape lighting installation.
Providing a product to your customers that is transparent with warranty and available customer service information makes an investment in outdoor lighting systems even more attractive.
2. Landscape Lighting: The Keys to Success
Commitment to Quality
Landscape lighting is much more than simply placing a few path lights on a lawn. Do you have the time, skill, and commitment to design lighting with the same artistry and quality you apply to the rest of your landscaping business?
Showing off your outstanding work at night could be the game changer for your company. But learning about the products and design as well as best practices for installation takes some time.
If you’re not sure where to start, look to in-sider’s professional landscape lighting educational resources. in-sider’s program is specifically tailored to professionals such as landscapers and other professionals that are looking to upgrade their services and make a difference in their clients landscaping experience for the long-term.
Integration with Landscaping
Consider lighting from the very beginning of the landscape design process and discuss it with your clients as you outline the project's goals.
Landscape lighting is about more than just functionality. You’ll want to apply the same creative mindset you have towards the rest of your work, along with your knowledge of hardscaping and plant textures, sizes, and colors.
When introducing the idea of landscape lighting to your customers, make sure you emphasize the safety benefits as well as the aesthetics.
It is important to describe how lighting systems for outdoor landscapes can improve their aesthetic design, provide safety, and keep the property well-lit when discussing whether to include this service in a customer’s landscape design.
Outdoor lighting is sometimes overlooked and not thought of to be a key element involved with landscaping design from a novice perspective, so guiding your customers in the direction and showing them what it can do for their property is crucial!
High Quality Products
The quality of the products you install not only reflects on you, but it also defines how your beautiful landscape is perceived at night.
Landscape lighting falls flat if the lights flicker or fade after just a few months. Your customers won’t be impressed. Neither will their friends and neighbors, for that matter!
Not all landscape lighting is made equal. If you want to build a successful lighting business, you need to build it on a foundation of well-designed, reliable products that stand the test of time.
At in-lite, our goal is to help landscape lighting installers reach their business goals. That’s why all in-lite fixtures and transformers carry a 5-year warranty, along with exclusive pricing and product education for trade professionals. Each product featured on our website has videos attached for step-by-step instruction, along with suggestions on the best placement for optimal performance.
3. Choosing the Most Profitable Type of Professional Landscape Lighting
As a professional landscape lighting installer, your two main choices for landscape lighting are line voltage and low voltage LED lighting fixtures.
Until the last decade or so, line voltage was the standard and often the only option available for landscape lighting. However, low voltage landscape lighting has surged in popularity and overtaken line voltage lighting in 2021.
For landscaping professionals, low voltage LED landscape lighting is also the most profitable choice by a long shot.
What is Low Voltage LED Landscape Lighting?
Low-voltage LED landscape lighting uses a step-down transformer to convert a 120-volt electrical supply to 12 volts. Because of the lower voltage, this lighting system is safer to install and maintain, especially outdoors.
Low voltage LED lighting systems are commonly used for outdoor landscape lighting around driveways, walkways, pools, and to show off the landscaping design of the house. Low voltage LED landscape lighting is an efficient and easy way to brighten up any outdoor area and enhance the aesthetics and stay safe while out at night.
Line Voltage vs Low Voltage Lighting
Standard 120-volt line voltage is more commonly used for outdoor lighting in commercial or public spaces. It is rarely used for residential landscape lighting due to how expensive it is to install and maintain.
Low voltage is much simpler to install and maintain rather than line. It is also much safer and easier to install for someone who is not formally trained as an electrician. You don’t have to go back to school to pick up this trade!
In fact, low voltage landscape lighting is so easy to install that some homeowners take on the challenge to do it themselves. Of course, the final product doesn't compare to the work of a skilled professional who is properly trained and experienced. Leave the job to the professionals!
What are the Advantages of Low Voltage Lighting?
As a landscape contractor, there are many advantages to using low voltage LED landscape lighting as your product of choice.
Low voltage landscape lighting is very safe, which is why it is recommended for residential use. The 12-volt low-voltage lighting system ensures that any child, pet, or house guest is protected from getting shocked or starting a fire in the case that they accidently touch something. On the other hand, 120-volt power has serious consequences if someone were to touch the system.
Low voltage LED landscape lighting is very easy to install and safe to do yourself. It is a simple transformer-cable- fixture setup that is fairly easy to learn to install on your own.
Additionally, since low voltage set-ups consume less power, your customers' electrical bills each month are much lower than using line voltage systems. No complaints there!
Become a Low Voltage LED Landscape Lighting Installer
Adding to the services you provide to your customers is a great way to invest in and grow your landscaping business.
With a solid plan, the right products, and a commitment to learning, professional low voltage lighting could be well worth your time and effort to increase your customer base and revenue. There’s a high profit margin, it's easy to do, and the potential for ongoing revenue from maintenance is practically limitless!
in-sider is here to help you along the way, from learning how to perform installations and maintenance checkups, and the ins and outs of the landscape lighting industry. Join our free in-sider program today or contact us to learn more!